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Friday, September 30, 2016

The Morning Roundup: Spacecraft, Hurricanes, and Tim Kaine

Posted by on Fri, Sep 30, 2016 at 9:13 AM

Good morning, it's Friday.

1. ESA's Rosetta hits comet, signal lost forever.

From NPR:

The historic spacecraft has transformed scientists' understanding of comets over the past two years, as it orbited the 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko comet and sent a stream of images and data back to Earth.

Now it has lost contact with Earth forever.

The historic spacecraft launched by the European Space Agency ended its mission by streaming data back to Earth as it free-fell toward the bumpy surface of the comet.

As NPR's Nell Greenfieldboyce reported yesterday, the crash won't have destroyed the spacecraft — it was traveling at about walking speed when it hit the comet. But the antenna will no longer be precisely angled at Earth, and the signal will be lost.

The final impact is believed to have occurred at 6:39 a.m. ET Friday, and the last signals reached Earth around 7:20 a.m. ET.

Among other discoveries, Rosetta found water that was nothing like the stuff we have on Earth on the comet it was orbiting. 

2. The Clinton campaign likes Raleigh.

Fresh off a strong debate performance (or was Trump just that bad?) on Monday, Hillary Clinton rallied at Wake Tech on Tuesday. Turns out she isn't the only one hitting the City of Oaks. 

First, Tim Kaine is in Raleigh preparing for his vice presidential debate against Mike Pence next week. He's not scheduled to make any public appearances, but as Colin Campbell at the N&O notes:

Dome notes that Kaine is a harmonica player whose Raleigh visit just happens to coincide with the IBMA World of Bluegrass festivities. The candidate has been known to make surprise musical appearances, so it’s entirely possible he might pop up at one of the impromptu bluegrass jam sessions taking place this week in the downtown Marriott hotel.
And next Tuesday, Michelle Obama is campaigning in Raleigh and Charlotte. Given that the last PPP poll showed Clinton up in North Carolina, it isn't a bad strategy. 

3. Is Matthew going to hit N.C.?

No one really knows yet, but there's a possibility, and it doesn't show any sign of slowing down.

From WRAL:

After a few tropical storms wandered harmlessly out into the Atlantic Ocean, a fresh storm could make its way close enough to North Carolina next week to have an impact.

Tropical Storm Matthew was named Wednesday morning as wind speeds reached 60 mph. The storm is moving west toward Central America, but will most likely take a sharp turn north in the coming days. 

"It's actually on the stronger side for a storm that has just been named," said WRAL meteorologist Elizabeth Gardner.

The Washington Post notes that Matthew is taking a similar track to Hurricane Hazel in 1954, which hit the Carolina coast as a Category 4. Let's hope that doesn't happen.

4. Turns out the General Assembly wasn't going for a full repeal HB 2 after all. 

Via the N&O, Speaker Tim Moore told Spectrum News' Tim Boyum:

“There was substantial support in the House caucus to look at a reset” if Charlotte acted first, Moore said.

But the speaker indicated that some parts of HB2 would have remained in effect as leaders had planned to “get rid of most of those provisions and just make sure we kept in the bathroom piece and the other things.”

That admission prompted Boyum to ask if the plan wasn’t to vote on a “full repeal.”

Moore’s reply: “In a manner of speaking, it could have been, but we never got there because Charlotte wouldn’t negotiate with us.”

That's convenient, considering that the impetus for all of that was the N.C. Restaurant Association saying that HB 2 would be repealed if Charlotte repealed its ordinance. 

That's all, have a good weekend.

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